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External Works needed - 197 days and counting without Installation

GC24
Tuning in

I am disheartened to see that this appears to be an age old issue that carries very little in the way of 'light at the end of the external work tunnel'.

We were existing customers who moved into a new property 21st July 2023, Virgin Media advised installation would go ahead 31st July 2023 .... 10 days without connection already filled us with dread knowing it would have a significant impact on our ability to work as well as our homes functionality. 

Fast forward 197 days, 12 rescheduled installations and a final breakdown into tears on the phone to THE most unfathomable 'customer service' I've ever experienced in my life - I am looking for ANY advice that may help our case. 

We continue to be told that external work is needed and have had every story, hold up and excuse given to us to date. I cannot begin to think of the hours (maybe even days!) we have now wasted being on hold to the various departments only to be given conflicting information.  If you're really lucky you sometimes get to speak to an optimist who tells you everything is hunky dory and the installation is DEFINITELY going ahead ....only for it to be cancelled often with less than 12 hours notice. What fun we have had.

We raised a formal complaint back in December and the 8 week period has now passed qualifying us to escalate it to the Communications Ombudsman - has anyone had to resort to this and did it bring any success? In the last conversation with our appointed complaints correspondent she was able to obtain the golden explanation of it being the councils fault and they are the ones causing the delays, as many others have reported this is an outright falsehood. I contacted the local council who confirmed no such permits have been applied for or granted since 25 September with regards to our building and no outstanding work is reported.

I am aware of the automatic compensation scheme and will welcome that in due course but it isn't aiding us in getting the service we so desperately need. Unfortunately Virgin seem to have somewhat of a monopoly in our area with several other providers advising they cant supply or the speed not being that which we would require for our jobs.

Adding insult to injury we are surrounded by neighbors many who have virgin installed - a new neighbour moved in not but a month ago and Virgin have been out to do the wire pull and install his modem - How is this possible!? We share a wall with that property!?

It was only today that we learnt that the installation dates are to be taken with 'a pinch of salt' and that it is merely a moving/automated date. If only we were told this before taking multiple days of annual leave on their emailed assurance that a technician will be coming between the hours of 8am-1pm (a member of their team even phones up in the days beforehand to confirm our availability and yet it was implied today this was unnecessary of us, as such action would only be needed if and when we are told the external work is in fact completed. Brand New Information.)

The preinstallation team advises that they are prohibited from having any contact with the partnered contractors who carry out the external work and that the notes they can see are of little to no help.... make it make sense.

WHAT IS HAPPENING AT VIRGIN MEDIA!? How is this a service? How as a company are you allowed to treat 'customers' with such a dysfunctional system? How many people are employed by Virgin to provide a 'service' that the very same company prevents them from doing? its INSANE.

Any advice/shared experiences are most welcome (how long before you finally had installation completed? Ombudsman help? - if by some miracle a member of the Virgin team can do anything of substance, that of course would be so greatly appreciated.

13 REPLIES 13

Cardiffman282
Knows their stuff

I would hope that the neighbour's adjacent installation will prompt the VM forum team to have a look for you.

I don't know what your work is but generic Office apps including Teams etc should still work fine on old fashioned copper FTTC for now. You might also wish to explore 4/5G connections via 3 etc. 

I'm not a Very Insightful Person (just a little bit, sometimes). I don't work for Virgin Media (but then nor do any of the offshore customer service agents).

Kyled
Tuning in

I was in the same boat. But today the outside installation has finally happened. I put a complaint in. Asked for a deadlock letter etc. something I did this morning also was contact SVELLA the sub contractors. I left them a message, voicemail and emailed them. Must of been my lucky day because they came out and managed to pre-pull the wires, without any digging!

I would find out off VM who the subcontracts are and reach out to them. Good luck 🤞🏻 

Thank you, glad to hear you're now up and running! Hopefully Virgin can supply this information so we can attempt to make contact with the sub contractors - just find it bizarre that they say they can't.

Thank you again 

GC24
Tuning in

UPDATE: Contacted Avonline the external contractors responsible for any external groundwork - they advised no referral has been made to them in respect of our property, they have no record of our account or address. Everything Virgin has told us regarding them being the cause of the delay is false much like their lies about the local council.

A Virgin technician then visited the property today and advised that in 7 months no-one has even done a pre survey on our property that would lead to a referral for external work - meaning everything told to us regarding external contractors, hold ups from the council etc is simply not applicable on any level. He's unsure why we've been told this information, why that information is on our account or why there has been 12 cancellations for them to visit the property.

He observed that several neighbours have Virgin Media, their cables are clearly visible and even if there was a blockage a technician would be able to T off those cables to provide us with a connection. He could not explain how a neighbour could move into the building 6 months after us and get set up before us.

We have been left exasperated and nothing short of appalled that despite over 7 months of constant follow up contact, days of wasted annual leave, hours spent on hold to the pre installation team and customer service team. For us to exhaust their complaints process and for this not to come to light?

We are not set up and running yet but the technician advised he would 'schedule' the installation.

jpeg1
Alessandro Volta

Well you will certainly be entitled to a substantial amount of compensation for the delays and any missed appointments. Keep up a diary.

It's very likely that VM will resist paying such a sum, but you will get support and advice on here from others who have taken successful cases to the Ombudsman. 

- jpeg1
My name is NOT Alessandro. That's just a tag Virginmedia sticks on some contributors. Please ignore it.

Hey @GC24,

Welcome to the Community forums and thanks for the post.

Firstly let me apologise that this has been ongoing for so long and you are still unsure on why this has been delayed for such time, I do want to help with this and look into getting this explained better for you and hopefully have the installation pushed through, with this I will need to confirm some information through via a private message which I will be sending to you now.

Joe

Hi Joe, no private message has been received?

Exact same here, promised installation of 11Novemeber! Still waiting and constantly in contact with Svella! Honestly wish they would get their act together! Svella are literally 5mins away from me aswell!!!!!!!!!

Joseph_B, please make sure a member of staff reviews my post ASAP!